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Greek Pasta Bake

My mom taught me to cook, and I love creating new recipes. I developed this casserole on a cold and snowy afternoon many years ago. Tangy lemon and herbs are complemented by the subtle sweetness of cinnamon. —Carol Stevens, Basye, Virginia
  • Total Time
    Prep: 40 min. Bake: 1 hour
  • Makes
    6 servings

Ingredients

  • 1/2 pound ground beef
  • 1/2 pound ground lamb
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 3 teaspoons dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1 can (15 ounces) tomato sauce
  • 1 can (14-1/2 ounces) diced tomatoes, undrained
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 2 cups uncooked rigatoni or large tube pasta
  • 4 ounces feta cheese, crumbled

Directions

  • In a large skillet, cook beef and lamb over medium heat until no longer pink; drain. Stir in the onion, garlic, oregano, basil, salt, pepper and thyme. Add the tomato sauce, tomatoes and lemon juice. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat; simmer, uncovered, for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  • Stir in sugar and cinnamon. Simmer, uncovered, 15 minutes longer.
  • Meanwhile, cook the pasta according to package directions; drain. Stir into meat mixture.
  • Transfer to a greased 2-qt. baking dish. Sprinkle with feta cheese. Cover and bake at 325° for 45 minutes. Uncover; bake 15 minutes longer or until heated through.
    Freeze option: Cool unbaked casserole; cover and freeze. To use, partially thaw in refrigerator overnight. Remove from refrigerator 30 minutes before baking. Preheat oven to 325°. Bake casserole as directed, increasing time as necessary to heat through and for a thermometer inserted in center to read 165°.
Nutrition Facts
1 each: 316 calories, 12g fat (6g saturated fat), 54mg cholesterol, 840mg sodium, 29g carbohydrate (6g sugars, 4g fiber), 22g protein.

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Reviews

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Average Rating:
  • drejka
    Jan 15, 2020

    I didn't think there would be a big difference between this and other ground beef casseroles, but I was wrong! The lamb flavor really came through, and we loved it. I made a Greek salad to serve alongside. Can't wait to make this one again!

  • Ellen
    Nov 14, 2019

    I am going to make it with all ground lamb. We love, love, love lamb, but I have never used it as ground meat. I love substituting ground bison for regular beef. I will rate the recipe after I make and eat tonight.

  • Christina
    Jul 8, 2019

    So I did that annoying thing where I broke a lot of rules...but it still turned out great. Here's what I changed: 1) Used all beef b/c my family doesn't like lamb 2) Added about 3/4 of a cup of chopped kalamata olives -- that was my husband's favorite part 3) I used two jars of leftover spaghetti sauce a little water to get it to the amount of liquid the recipe calls for 4) I shortened the cook time on the sauce b/c I didn't have time...I think the thicker spaghetti sauce helped with that and I also left the pasta little al dente before putting in the oven. It was the perfect amount of doneness at the end. 5) sprinkled with fresh herbs right before serving IT WAS DELICIOUS!!!

  • Leslie
    Feb 15, 2019

    Used all beef. Had large shell pasta in cupboard so used that. Family loved it. Takes a full 1 1/2 hours. Start early.

  • Psalm127-3
    Jan 7, 2019

    Gad this looks great as well, love tubular pastas. Love the idea of [email protected] If I have any lamb (or it goes on sale) I will use it otherwise my substitution will be ground pork for the lamb part as I always have pork of all kinds. Can’t wait to make this, hummm think maybe tonight as it’s frizzle-a-ting outside

  • Lynne
    Dec 8, 2018

    This came out delicious even though I couldn't get the lamb so I used all ground beef and due to time constraints, had to bypass baking it but it came out great!

  • kids chauffer
    Feb 24, 2017

    Super easy to make

  • allaboutcookies86
    Jul 6, 2012

    I LOVE greek food! I LOVED this recipe for something different to eat. It almost tasted like a gyro with pasta. Now my husband wants lamb all the time!!

  • Mary0806
    Jan 24, 2011

    Can this be frozen like a OAMC recipe?

  • kaytmo
    Sep 26, 2010

    This is one of my favorite dinners and the leftovers are good too!